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Monday, May 01, 2006

Mambazha Kutan with Soy

The first time I had Mambazha Kutan ( or Mango stew) was in Palakkad, Kerela where we had been for our annual vacation. This was the real deal - the mangoes and coconuts were from the orchard, the curry leaves from the backyard and the rice from the paddy fields outside. The combination of the wonderful air and natural surroundings and the delicious meal is something that has stayed with me.
This is the authentic Kerela recipe for Mango kutan with some changes to make it healthier for our urban lifestyles.

Some Main Ingredients

1 ripe mango diced roughly into cubes
1 1/2 cup shredded coconut ( fresh or frozen)
3/4 cup Nutrella soy granules
1/3 cup sour buttermilk

2 teaspoons fenugreek seeds
1 teaspoon mustard seeds
3-4 red chillies
1 tablespoon uncooked rice
1/2 teaspoon turmeric powder
1 teaspoon jaggery
a few curry leaves

Lightly Roasting the spices


Prep Work
Boil the soy granules in a little water for 3-4 minutes. You can also microwave them for 1 minute with a little water - they just need to get soft.
Roast 1 tsp fenugreek seeds and the red chillies. Put these in the mixer along with the coconut, soy and raw rice. Grind well to make a paste

Heat 1 cup of water. Add the mangoes, turmeric, jaggery and salt and boil for 10 minutes on a medium flame. You can adjust the jaggery based on the sweetness of the mango. Then add the ground paste and allow the kutan to simmer for 3-4 minutes, stirring occassionally. Switch off the flame and add the buttermilk and mix well.
In a smaller vessel, heat oil and when the oil is smoking, add mustard and fenugreek seeds. After the seeds splutter, switch off the flame and throw the curry leaves into the vessel. Pour this seasoning mixture into the kutan and allow the kutan to sit for 3-4 minutes.
Serve hot with steaming rice and papads.

Mambazha Kutan with soy

The above recipe is completely authentic except for the addition of soy. Coconut is a high cholestrol food while soy is an excellent source of protein. Therefore I use coconut and soy in the proportion of 2:1 for this dish and the results are very good. You can change this ratio and use more/less soy depending on your preferences.

Rolicking with Raw Mango -

Raw mango - When I was a child, summer vacations were all about getting tanned in the hot sun, climbing mango trees and getting bruised and bitten by bugs - and sampling the raw mangoes from the tree.
These are a few of my favourite dishes with Raw Mango
1) Mango bhel - Make the regular bhel and throw in a few slivers of chopped raw mango for an additional kick
2) Mangai moru chadam - The traditional Moru chadam or Yogurt rice is made with rice and buttermilk and seasoned with mustard seeds, urad dal, green chillies and curry leaves. To this combination, add some milk to reduce the tartness of the yogurt. then add a few finely chopped raw mango for extra bite.
3) Raw Mango Dal - While pressure cooking the lentils, add 1/2 a raw mango - this is a good substitute for tamarind. Season and serve
4) RawMango curry pickle - Another summer favourite - Heat oil and season mustard seeds, hing and red chilli powder. Pour over finely sliced raw mango, add salt and some fenugreek powder and allow to sit overnight. you have spicy-sour pickled mango in no time - one of the simpler pickles.


  • Hi Vidya- Nice recipe. I made this also in addition to my mango gazpacho. But the recipe is made with a ground paste of cumin, coconut and green chilies. I like your idea of using soy. May be you should try using tofu. The flavor will be more neutral.

    Btw, I have heard that having soy protein and dairy in the same meal can lead to digestive issues. Not to scare you, but do read up on this.

    By Blogger Mika, at 5:20 PM  

  • Hi Mika, thanks for visiting - btw- I love the Green Jackfruit blogs.
    More inf abt soy - there are some people who say soy protein is not too good since it contains estrogen which is a female hormone - I have read articles which denounce soy. At the time of my pregnancy, this worried me and I checked with my OB-Gyn whether soy is really good for me and my baby. She said that soy protein is excellent and that I should not worry about it. So I guess I am one of soy's believers. I personally have never has any problems with it.
    You suggestion about tofu is pretty good too - I have used it in Moru Kutan. For this dish however, I personally feel that soaked soy granules match the texture of coconut better and also absorb the spices in this stew better.
    Thanks and looking forward to trying your very unique gazpacho

    By Blogger Vidya_Iyer, at 1:18 PM  

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